Compare and contrast Beowulf’s actions with the actions of another other young warrior in the epic.

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Beowulf’s actions may be compared and contrasted to those of Wiglaf. The two warriors, who are young at different points in the saga, are similar in their courage and resolve. One significant difference between them is Wiglaf’s great skill as an orator. While Beowulf is primarily a man of action, he benefits greatly from the inspiring speech that Wiglaf makes before they take on the dragon together. Wiglaf ultimately proves that his bold actions equal, or even surpass, his stirring words.

Through most of the saga, Beowulf is head and shoulders above the other warriors. Both his fearlessness and his independence make him stand out, as he charges ahead even when others feel daunted. This fierce resolve is evident when he pursues Grendel's mother into her underwater lair.

Even such a great hero as Beowulf, being human, must begin to fade with age. Other, younger men must be able to succeed him, even those from other societies. The young Wiglaf is presented as a logical heir to Beowulf in many ways, although he is Swedish. Wiglaf understands how much his previous exploits mean to Beowulf. His lavish praise of Beowulf motivates the now-aging hero as they challenge the dragon. Ultimately, it is Wiglaf who stabs the beast, giving Beowulf the opportunity to deliver the fatal blow.

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